The well respected Journal of Clinical Nutrition published a study in its June edition that found that of over 40,000 men and women between the ages of 29-69 who were followed for 13.4 years, those who consumed the most olive oil, were 26% less likely to die for any reason and 44% less likely to die from heart disease during that period.

Olive oil contains monounsaturated fats, which are less susceptible than polyunsaturated fat to damage that can render them unhealthy.  Olive oil also contains vitamin E and antioxidants that are healthy in addition to the monounsaturated fat health benefits.

Olive oil has been shown to reduce systemic inflammation (a contributor to the development of chronic degenerative disease), help with blood sugar control, which when out of control as in Type II diabetes, can contribute to heart disease and possibly even certain types of cancer. It has also been shown to lower bad LDL cholesterol and normalize blood clotting.

Many of you probably know that olive oil is one of the ingredients that researchers think contributes to the life extension benefits of the Mediterranean diet.

It is important to remember that just because it contains healthy fats, it should not be consumed in excess, if for no other reason the high calorie count.  Also, olive oil should replace the other store bought oils that you may use for salads or low temperature cooking.  IT SHOULD NOT BE CONSUMED IN ADDITION TO THE LESS HEALTHY OILS YOU MAY BE CURRENTLY USING.  (For moderate temperature cooking, it is probably best to cook with canola oil).

So, it is suggested that you consume about 25 milliliters (8 tenths of an ounce or about 2 tablespoons) of virgin olive oil a day. Store your olive oil in a cool, dark place (a cabinet is fine) to protect it from being damaged by heat or light.

Add some exercise, eat more green and yellow vegetables, reduce your sugar intake, reduce your waistline (central adiposity), don’t smoke and who says……… “There Isn’t a Fountain of Youth?”

 

Curt Hendrix B.S. M.S. C.C.N. C.N.S.

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